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Minnesota asks providers to halt Johnson & Johnson shots

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota officials told healthcare providers around the state Tuesday to pause use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine amid fears the shots may cause blood clots.

The Minnesota Department of Health said in a release that an extremely rare type of blood clot has been reported in six people who received the vaccine in the United States. All six cases occurred among women between the ages of 18 and 48, and symptoms occurred six to 13 days after vaccination, the release said.

Minnesota officials said they are not aware of any cases occurring among the more than 184,000 stare residents who have received this vaccine, Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration are acting out of an abundance of caution and the state will follow suit.

“We will be closely monitoring the federal review process and use that information to help guide our efforts here in Minnesota in the days ahead,” she said.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine represents about 6.6% percent of the total supply of vaccines Minnesota has received to date, so the pause is not expected to dramatically slow the pace of vaccinations in the state, officials said.

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